On Saturday, I interviewed Buddy Nielsen from Senses Fail and as always, it was awesome to be able to talk to a musician whose work I actually have really enjoyed. I have definitely had a few nights where I kept “Martini Kiss,” “Lady in a Blue Dress,” and a bunch of other Senses Fail classics on repeat. And surprise – he lives in Jersey City! I had no idea, haha. Now I’m sort of tempted to find where he lives and give him a big hug. Or I’ll just post my article about him….
Anyway, what I loved most about this interview was that Buddy was just so honest and open. He definitely said a lot of things that no one else has had the guts to say on record yet.
You can see the article as it appeared on NJ.com here.
Jersey boy and Senses Fail vocalist Buddy Nielsen sounds off
Senses Fail vocalist Buddy Nielsen knows exactly how he feels about his home state.
“People are f—ing a—holes in New Jersey. People aren’t very nice to each other,” said the Ridgewood native. “In Jersey, there’s this undercurrent of aggression…more so than almost anywhere else in the world.”
Nielsen said this aggression and the tendency of some New Jerseyans’ to openly discriminate against others often pushes some people into alternative lifestyles.
“In Jersey, if you’re different or not like them, it’s easy to get called names and get picked on whereas in other parts of the country like down south, when you have a difference, you don’t necessarily voice it. You keep it to yourself. Here, you voice it no matter what.”
“Here, the mainstream is so boisterous that it forces people who don’t agree with it to do their own thing, say, ‘F—- this, I’m gonna do my own thing and find people who share my views,’” said the Jersey City resident. “It spurs you to rebel.”
Nielsen said as he grew older, he began realizing how different he was from others.
“I just think that people should be allowed to do anything they want – like with moral issues, how I think you should go about things, how you should treat other people.”
Inevitably, Nielsen himself is also unabashedly opinionated, a trait that has helped him and his fellow Jersey boys make aggressive, yet melodic music.
He described their style as “a mix between heavy and melodic, energetic and passionate.”
Despite the vocalist’s opinion of the state, the band has gained a strong following in the New York-New Jersey area and is looking forward to their concert on Sunday at Maxwell’s in Hoboken.
“I like Maxwell’s a lot,” said Nielsen, who said he also likes DC’s Tavern on 8th Street. “They’re the only two places that support an artistic vibe in the city of Hoboken really.”
“It’s awesome because it’s a small room. It’ll be intimate, fun. There’ll be stage diving,” he said. “It’ll be good.”
Hoboken itself, however, does not have his heart.
“It’s kind of the young, cool city but there are still white people with children who work in finance. There’s no undercurrent of the arts anymore,” he said, adding that he has higher hopes for Jersey City.
“It’s great. I love it. It’s better than Hoboken – it’s less yuppie and I feel it’s just on the precipice of being really great.”
Listen to Senses Fail’s song “New Year’s Eve” off their most recent album, “The Fire.”